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Old 02-08-2019, 11:57 AM   #1
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Smile South Dakota to Texas Fall 2019

Hi All,

I hope this is the right place to ask for travel advice. If not I apoligize in advance. Anyway my wife and I are planning a two year trip around the US starting in July this year, as we start from Seattle were heading east through NP and monuments getting to around SD in September and then heading south to Texas. Does anyone have any recommendations of roads and or what to see while travelling in that direction. Were not on a timeline other than being in Houston area by Thanksgiving, give a week or two! Thanks in advance for any input.
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Old 02-09-2019, 09:37 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by dcfleetwood View Post
Hi All,

...starting in July this year, as we start from Seattle were heading east through NP and monuments getting to around SD in September and then heading south to Texas. Does anyone have any recommendations of roads and or what to see while travelling in that direction. ....
It's a goldmine through there: Yellowstone, Little Big Horn Battlefield, Devil's Tower, Deadwood, Lead gold mine, Mount Rushmore, etc.

Besides those,
Sturgis Bike Rally is first week of Aug.

The Badlands soil layer colors tend to be faint. A rain, good snowmelt, or snow blasting really brings out the colors. Worth it either way.

This place may or may not appeal to you. Very unique as MM silos were imploded according to Treaty rules. Not like Atlas sites, which were reused or sold.
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Old 02-09-2019, 11:13 AM   #3
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If coming down I-35, I recommend stopping in Oklahoma City and visiting the Memorial to the OK city bombing. It's an inspiring visit. Lots of things to see and do around the DFW area, so PM me if you want more information. If you are staying on the north side of Houston, I highly recommend Rayford Crossing RV, but if you are going to be there Thanksgiving you need to make reservations early. They are completely full on Holidays.
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Old 02-09-2019, 11:20 AM   #4
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If you're not on a timeline may I suggest you stay off the interstates as much as possible. You can encounter so many unexpected and interesting things and experiences that way.
With the internet you can Google the names of each town along your planned day's route and discover what each town is proud of and wants visitors to see.
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Old 02-09-2019, 11:21 AM   #5
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Don't be afraid to take the secondary roads South. You will experience nice straight back roads through rural towns and almost no traffic. We like 83 or 283.
Some towns even have free camping at city parks w/elec.
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Old 02-10-2019, 11:32 AM   #6
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Stay a few days in the Black Hills. Amazing sites you will see with the Hills, animals and architecture. When you leave Rapid City you can run straight South thru Hermosa and Buffalo Gap (both interesting histories) on 79/18 into Nebraska. You will see what the prairies really are as you get into Nebraska and further South. Too much to list and see, if you are interested in history of the buffalo. Traffic will not be a problem and the roads (two years ago) are nice.
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Old 02-10-2019, 05:43 PM   #7
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As others have said it really depends on what you want to see and how much time you want to take. I can't help with the northern part of this route, as I don't think I have ever been to South Dakota, my experience is limited to going north and south across various parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and the southern third of Nebraska. I would tend to think of a drive from South Dakota to Houston as being something to be casually done in a week or so, not the 6 weeks you have in your schedule. Sure there is stuff you can find to fill your time along the way, stop in Kearney Nebraska and see the archway acrosss I-80 https://www.roadsideamerica.com/story/9790 and / or the Car Collection museum with hundreds of vintage cars all under one roof. Head on south into Kansas and see that it is not as flat as you might have expected, stop in Hutchinson where you can stay at the state fair grounds RV campground with 125 full hookup sites, you may have it almost to yourself if there are no events at the fairground that week. While in Hutchinson, go to the Cosmosphere space museum, where you can see both US and Russian Space capsules including Liberty Bell 7 Mercury capsule, Gemini X and an Apollo 13, as well as an SR71 blackbird, and a Gemini Titan rocket standing upright. While in Hutchinson, go across town to the Stratica salt dome museum where you can travel 650 feet down a mine shaft and see part of the labyrinth of a salt mine. From there, the possibilities really open up Wichita, is a fairly good size city of about 600,000 filled with a surprising number of museums and other attractions. Moving on south you have Oklahoma City, mentioned above is the federal building memorial and museum, I have not been there, but plan to go some day. One of my bother in laws by marriage (my sister's husband's (now ex-husband) brother) and his wife worked at the Oklahoma federal building, thankfully they were both out of town on the day of the bombing.



Population density continues to go up all along this entire route, SD has less than 1 million people, NE has about 2 million, Kansas about 3 million Oklahoma about 4 million then you hit Texas with over 28 million people, most of them in the eastern half of the state, the DFW metroplex alone has a population around 6.8 million people. So as you go south you will find more and more cultural related stops and fewer and fewer vast open spaces.
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:22 PM   #8
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I was at Ellsworth AFB a few years so my siteseeing was spread out. It's been nearly 30yrs, but there used to be lots of campgrounds throughout the area. Try this site for the local area : https://www.visitrapidcity.com/plan-...rmation-center

Using Rapid City area as the center, a reasonable drive radius could keep you busy for a while.

There's so much more in the area than I can recall, but something I didn't mention earlier:
Skyline Drive in Rapid. It's on a ridgeline in town. Look West and you see the Black Hills. Look East and you see prairie past the town.

Mammoth Site in Hot Springs SD.
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Old 02-11-2019, 09:50 PM   #9
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Sept and Oct are good months to be in the southern Utah national parks and Grand Canyon, AZ. September is beautiful for aspen in Colorado. You could also explore northern New Mexico. Lots of place to go. Don't rush it down to Texas. Enjoy the beauty!
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Old 02-12-2019, 09:10 AM   #10
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Hi All,

I hope this is the right place to ask for travel advice. .......

This should work - First let me give you a big for giving yourself the time and not having a schedule, other than two years (Might need more time, but once you start who keeps track)

Anyway my wife and I are planning a two year trip around the US starting in July this year, as we

start from Seattle we're

Guessing you have already done Cascades and Olympic NP's so will not think about them Now.

heading east through NP and Monuments getting to around

Being July, My Guess is that Glacier will be the first Major stop - Guessing you will spend some time on Both the West and the East sides, as they both offer different types of Experiences. Will add that Going to the Sun Road will be Open and it along with the Lakes and Hikes will be the Highlight of the area. I'll also add that a few days should be set aside to get into the Canadian section also - This is One Beautiful area - and many if not most will pale in comparison as you move forward. A really Good Camera is Critical - there is so much to see - you just can't take it all in - sensory overload I think it's called - so take three pictures every time you think One will Do - then store and save these, as IMHO they are just as Precious as Gold.

SD in September and

Normally Yellowstone would be Next - - But I'll suggest that you head across to do North and South Dakota Now - Saving Yellowstone for a little later - As all the Parks are treasures they are all Different - going from Glacier to Teddy Roosevelt might be a let down if you are only comparing Big Rocks and the Color of the Water - BUT - this is just Different - Wild - Open - Skies and the West the way it was - Soak it in and enjoy the time to Recharge the Batteries, JMHO - then head down to the Black Hills for a Good solid week or two of exploring, Remembering that Sturgis is usually during the Beginning of August so if Motor cycles are an issue just be aware - the Black Hills are just Awesome - Custer is where I'd stay - this will allow you to take many of the Spectacular drives, not to mention see and enjoy more - Mt Rushmore - Jewel and Wind Caves - Custer State Park - Black Hills - Chief - Needles - Tunnels - ...........so much to see and do, one of my favorite places.

then heading south to Texas.

Seeing how I've moved YOUR plan around we should be Heading to Yellowstone Now - this should be around the End of August - Why you ask - well Yellowstone is Popular - No really POPULAR - so letting some of the kids get back home will help - not that it will not still be Popular but that it will be a Little Better - and IMHO September and October are the Best time to be In the Rockies and heading South. Cody - Wind River Canyon - Beartooth Highway - Chief Joseph Hwy - and then into Yellowstone - I'd Recommend the North section first as it tends to be the least crowded (JMHO) in late August early September - Just depends on where you are able to get a spot to stay as to how you will explore - there are many little secrets CG's in the Park - Search and Find as they will reward you - Then as you begin to head down through the park you will notice that Few actually do many of the Many Hikes - so if you want to get away from the crowds, just walk a few minutes and you will be all alone. Stop in and see if you can spend a night in the Yellowstone Lodge - IMHO this is one of the Memories you should enjoy.

I could go on and on but the tour is in your hands, enjoy it and again 3 images every time you think one will do.


So now we are into September - Into the Tetons - they are just Magical as is the Sky, so enjoy the Lake the Hikes - just the time in and with some pretty Beautiful Rocks. - Out through Jackson - for me just a drive through - out by alpine on to Flaming Gorge then Split Rock CG on the Green River before capturing Colorado on the way to Texas.

Does anyone have any recommendations of roads and or what to see while travelling in that
direction.

Colorado, is my special state - so I'll just say it deserves the last week of September and the Month of October - https://lynn.smugmug.com/Travel/Colo...pens/i-tsVRkXg - Aspen in Colorado are just special - they are short lived and need to be Planned around, as IMHO they are one of the Wonders of the World. (To me it is just Special) Here is a link to an older Colorado Post #9 - Western routes,trip planning help.

Were not on a timeline other than being

in Houston area by Thanksgiving,

OK - You now will have three weeks to get to Texas - I'd head over to Moab and Head out through UTAH - RT 128 - Moab - Arches - Canyonlands - State Parks - this will just be a Teaser on Utah - as we will need more time later - But it is a great time of year to see a lot of this - and plan for more later - Rt 191 south - Monument Valley - Goosenecks - Canyon de Chelly - Window Rock - Sand Dunes - Carlsbad - just so much more to touch and plan for after Thanksgiving.

give a week or two!

Thanks in advance for any input.
Good Boots - Good Layers - Good Fleece - Good Rain gear - Great Camera (IMHO it needs to be small or it will not be with you when you need it - Some still use the old 35mm type but I'm of the opinion that a really good small Travel Camera is just easy = you will have it when you need it) - and TIME - Lots of TIME.

Hope this is of some help - is likely too long but this is the trip of a Lifetime - So..........

Best of Luck,


Stan's Images will help - https://www.pbase.com/sparker1/root%26view=tree

Moab by 4runnerguy - https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/f...d/29448394.cfm

More to follow as you break this down into manageable pieces
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Old 03-06-2019, 08:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
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Good Boots - Good Layers - Good Fleece - Good Rain gear - Great Camera (IMHO it needs to be small or it will not be with you when you need it - Some still use the old 35mm type but I'm of the opinion that a really good small Travel Camera is just easy = you will have it when you need it) - and TIME - Lots of TIME.

Hope this is of some help - is likely too long but this is the trip of a Lifetime - So..........

Best of Luck,


Stan's Images will help - https://www.pbase.com/sparker1/root%26view=tree

Moab by 4runnerguy - https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/f...d/29448394.cfm

More to follow as you break this down into manageable pieces
Hi Busskipper,
Thank you for taking the time to really help us with the plans, which have changed a little. We are planning to leave on Aug. 4th and as you stated Glacier 1st, then Waterton in Canada heading over towards badlands SD and then off to YNP after kids go back to school.

My real question if you don't mind is how long do we spend going through eastern Nebraska, Oklahoma city, OK Witchita KS before heading towards the gulf area. My thoughts are a week or two because ultimately were trying to get to Alabama Florida area for the winter. OMG and looking at FLorida is a little intimidating. Could easily spend months down there, probably go back in winter of 2021 as well.

The only real timeline we have is to be in Richmond VA by first week of May for my sons graduation of Grad school!

I know I'm asking a lot but I've seen many posts by you which leads me to believe you've been around, and someday I hope to pass on my travels to help others as you are doing!

I read this forum on a daily basis and just love what it has to offer, so again I Thank you so much and hope some day we meet on the road!
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Old 03-07-2019, 10:32 AM   #12
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Hi Busskipper,
Thank you for taking the time to really help us with the plans, which have changed a little. We are planning to leave on Aug. 4th and as you stated Glacier 1st, then Waterton in Canada heading over towards badlands SD and then off to YNP after kids go back to school.

My real question if you don't mind is how long do we spend going through eastern Nebraska, Oklahoma city, OK Witchita KS before heading towards the gulf area. My thoughts are a week or two because ultimately were trying to get to Alabama Florida area for the winter. OMG and looking at FLorida is a little intimidating. Could easily spend months down there, probably go back in winter of 2021 as well.

The only real timeline we have is to be in Richmond VA by first week of May for my sons graduation of Grad school!

I know I'm asking a lot but I've seen many posts by you which leads me to believe you've been around, and someday I hope to pass on my travels to help others as you are doing!

I read this forum on a daily basis and just love what it has to offer, so again I Thank you so much and hope some day we meet on the road!
Just a note - after spending a good deal of time on a reply - my computer deleted the forum - - so lost the reply.

Will be tied up rest of the day now but will try to rework the answer using Word - so as not to loose it - and get back to you, later.

We have time,
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Old 03-07-2019, 02:46 PM   #13
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Hi Busskipper,

Thank you for taking the time to really help us with the plans, which have changed a little.

We are planning to leave on Aug. 4th and as you stated

Glacier 1st, then Waterton in Canada heading over towards

Making a couple of assumptions here – you will be able to drive 300-350 a day as needed. That FHU’s are the preferred campsite – You will be able to Boondock on occasion – maybe even Wally*Mart’ing, You are able to Hike, and bike and enjoy one or both?

Note here – some people are early risers and all dayr’s – some are slow starters and into the nighter’s – I’ve found that I need to keep the DW Happy so we generally start later and stay out later – Pack a Lunch with a Beer and some Wine (Water too) so as we drive around in the Toad we are able to stop and enjoy an area we find that we might like. If you Hike you will need to have Bear Spray and be ready to Use It. Yes, they are real and they are BIG, if you make lots of noise you will not see many if any.

Let’s do 17 days to and through all of Glacier – West – East – North – South – then on to Custer and the Black Hills, Mt Rushmore.


Badlands, SD and then off to

That will give you 10 days to do Custer and surrounds before landing in Yellowstone – September 1st

YNP after kids go back to school.

Yellowstone will still be Crowded in September – so Look at doing the North Loop (First Week) – Possible a day drive with the Beartooth and the Chief Joseph Highway and maybe Wind River Canyon and Cody? Possibly moving to West Yellowstone then doing the Southern part and the Tetons before heading out through Jackson (Second Week)?

Might do some Boondocking in and around YNP.

This will put you heading Out to the South around the 14-15th – I’d suggest driving through Flaming Gorge - Dino NM and Colorado Monument before Heading to Ouray to rest and relax for a week or so, sort of recharge the batteries. As this will be 6 plus weeks on the road going strong, a little slow down week is in order – not to mention the Aspen turning Gold and in one of the most beautiful Wild Places on EARTH! (JMHO). Could recommend Maroon Bells but outside of a Hotel room it's just not that easy and Ouray really will open a lot of Colorado to you. (Silverton - Telluride - Trout Lake - Dunton - Lake City - Alpine Loop - Black Canyon......)

Think you will have noticed by Now that the Aspen are High on My List of Must sees, and that I have put you in what I would Call Prime time Aspen viewing.



My real question if you don't mind is how long do we spend going through eastern Nebraska, Oklahoma City, OK Wichita, KS before heading towards the gulf area.

Think you might have figured out that driving through the fly over states does not make my list of to do’s - - I’ll continue to Plan Your Trip -- So now after recovering in Ouray it should be say sometime in the first week of October so we will have SIX weeks 42 + days to get to Houston.

So the question is - How much of Utah and the SouthWest are you up for................. - Could also get another few weeks in Colorado - Arizona is calling out - North Rim of the Grand Canyon is closed for services on October 15th but if the roads are clear of snow is still open for visitors - just no Services - We have been over Thanksgiving, on low snow years (loved it) - Page - Monument Valley - Zion are all still great options in the Fall......................on and on will need to get some direction from you on this next part.


My thoughts are a week or two because ultimately were trying to get to

-----

Alabama - Florida area for the winter.

Winter is still months away - so let's see how much of Utah - Arizona - New Mexico we might enjoy before heading to Houston, then on to Florida.

OMG and looking at Florida is a little intimidating. Could easily spend months down there, probably go back in winter of 2021 as well.

Florida is a Breeze – Swamps – Alligator’s – Mosquitoes - Humidity


The only real timeline we have is to be in Richmond VA by first week of May for my son’s graduation of Grad school!

? What happened to - in Houston area by Thanksgiving, -?


I know I'm asking a lot but I've seen many posts by you which leads me to believe you've been around, and someday I hope to pass on my travels to help others as you are doing!

I read this forum on a daily basis and just love what it has to offer, so again I Thank you so much and hope someday we meet on the road!

Tried to address as much as I felt you could possibly digest, Hope this is of some help.
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Old 03-07-2019, 02:58 PM   #14
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We have been going to Texas for the last few years from Minnesoooota. Our first stop of more than one night is OKC. We always spend a few days there as there is so much to do.


Do visit the Cowboy Hall of Fame and Western Heritage Museum. It's really an art gallery and it will take a day to see it all. Fantastic. We always stay at the Twin Fountains RV Resort and it's just five minutes away.



As mentioned the Federal Building Memorial.


There is a Military Museum of I believe the 25th Infantry that is fantastic. They have all of Ernie Pyle's original cartoons there. It's just west of I35 and there are signs.


From there we usually go through Houston and down to the Galveston area. We stay at the Galveston Bay CG and there is a lot to do in that area.


Whatever you do, just take your time and have fun.
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